Women Take Gun Safety into Their Own Hands

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13 News talked with women about why some feel the need to carry, and know how to wield, a weapon. "I would like to be able to defend myself if I ever have to," says Susan Wallace, who attended Monday's gun orientation. "The more you know about them, the less scary they are," says Joellen Foster, who also attended the event. Owning a gun can give women a sense of empowerment and protection, if they know how to use it properly.

"When it's used properly and safely, is something that's a very valuable tool and its an excellent means of personal protection," says Erin Gerety, who works with the Kaw Valley Gun Club and teaches the training class. Setting your sites on a 9 millimeter handgun can trigger feelings of fear and power. But the goal of the classes is to move the target from just owning a handgun, to knowing how to use it. "You need to know how to use it, or you may end up getting hurt," Wallace says.

Kaw Valley Gun Club is working with Gerety for the first time, to offer women handgun training. "It's loud, it's very intimidating to shoot," says Gerety of shooting a gun for the first time, "you want to make sure you're comfortable with it and know how to operate it properly, so you're not going to endanger anyone or yourself." From basic safety and the parts of a handgun, to how to load and fire, the class offers a non-threatening learning environment; teaching women take their safety into their own hands. "It's very empowering once you learn how to use it properly, because you learn it's not something to be feared," Gerety says. Gerety planned on hosting one ladies orientation, but because so many responded, has filled nearly three more. Call 233-1616 to reserve your spot or for more information.